Learning from International Experience
Edited by Graeme A. Hodge and Carsten Greve
Chapter 13: Public-private partnerships for infrastructure in Denmark: from local to global partnering?
13. Public–private partnerships for infrastructure in Denmark: from local to global partnering? Carsten Greve and Niels Ejersbo INTRODUCTION Public–private partnerships (PPPs) are currently the subject of much debate and discussion in the ﬁelds of public policy and public management in Scandinavia, including Denmark. While there is much talk about partnerships for infrastructure, there is little action on the ground in Denmark. PPP’s can be understood as ‘co-operation of some durability between public and private actors in which they jointly develop products and services and share risks and services which are connected to these products and services’ (Van Ham and Koppenjan, 2001:598). What is striking about most commentaries about PPPs is their assumption that PPPs represent something ‘new’. The argument in this chapter is that partnership-like arrangements have been with us for some time. PPPs are not new. To help us develop this argument further, we take our theoretical point of departure in historical–institutional theory (Thelen and Steinmo, 1992; Thelen, 1999). Historical institutionalism puts ‘emphasis on how institutions emerge from and are embedded in concrete temporal processes’ (Thelen, 1999). This chapter explores a particularly interesting case for exploring the evolution of partnerships during a longer time perspective. The case is about the relationship between a private sector company (Falck), responsible for ambulance driving and ﬁre ﬁghting in Denmark, and Danish local and regional governments. The case highlights a nearly century-old relationship that enables it to show how partnerships develop and how they change during various critical junctures...
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